In each of the past 45 years, the General Aviation Awards program and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) have recognized a small group of aviation professionals in the fields of flight instruction, aviation maintenance, avionics, and safety for their contributions to aviation, education, and flight safety.
This awards program is a cooperative effort between the FAA and more than a dozen industry sponsors. The selection process begins with local FAA Safety Team managers at Flight Standards District Offices (FSDO) and then moves on to the eight regional FAA offices. Panels of aviation professionals from within those four fields then select national winners from the pool of regional winners.
Recipients of this year’s national awards are Timothy Daniel “Tim” Adkison of Benton, Kentucky, Avionics Technician of the Year; Max Trescott of Mountain View, California, Certificated Flight Instructor (CFI) of the Year; Michael Daniel “Mike” Busch of Arroyo Grande, California, Aviation Maintenance Technician (AMT) of the Year; and John Anthony Teipen of University City, Missouri, FAA Safety Team Representative of the Year. Previously, this award was the Aviation Safety Counselor (ASC) of the Year.
The FAA administrator will present the national awards in July during a “Theater in the Woods” program at EAA AirVenture 2008 inOshkosh,Wisconsin. Included in the prize package for all four national winners is an all expense paid trip toOshkoshfor the recipient and a guest to attend the awards presentation and other GA Awards activities.
“These awards highlight the important role played by these individuals in promoting aviation education and flight safety,” said JoAnn Hill, General Aviation Awards Committee chairperson. “The awards program sponsors are pleased that these outstanding aviation professionals will receive the recognition they so richly deserve before their peers inOshkosh.”
2008 FAA SAFETY TEAM REPRESENTATIVE OF THE YEAR: John Teipen, a Master CFI as well as a Master Ground Instructor, exemplifies the standard of professionalism in the fields of aviation education and flight safety. He is involved in many areas of pilot education
including FAA WINGS seminars, FAASTeam online courses, flight instructor revalidation clinics (FIRCs), and youth aviation education programs.
Earning private pilot certification in 1984, he has since become a certificated flight instructor, an FAA aviation safety counselor (ASC), a FAASTeam representative, and a designated pilot examiner (DPE). His work as a DPE with pilot applicants and recommending CFI candidates provides a foundation for his educational work as a member of the FAA’s new safety program, the FAASTeam. Teipen established www.AVTrain.net, a website dedicated to promoting safety through education, to create and host online educational programs. This effort led the way to the first national courses for FAASTeam representatives and industry members, the new WINGS Pilot Proficiency Program, and additional www.FAASafety.gov online courses.
In 2005, Teipen was instrumental in the development of the Midwest Aviation Conference and Trade Show (www.MACTS.org) inSaint Louis. This annual event hosts a “super safety seminar” with nationally known speakers, an aviation trade show, a FIRC, an aviation awards banquet, and an aviation career program for high school students. Building on this experience, he created and introduced the extraordinarily successful “My First Logbook” and “Young Eagles Flight Education” programs for young people attending KidVenture during EAA’s AirVenture Oshkosh.
Teipen believes in continuing education for all pilots and includes himself in that regimen. A regular attendee at safety seminars and revalidation clinics, he achieved phase VIII of the recently retired FAA Pilot Proficiency Awards WINGS program and has completed the first level of the new WINGS program last year. A long time glider pilot and flight instructor, he has also earned the Soaring Society of America’s A, B, C, and Bronze Badges in 2007
He is one of only 20 aviation educators worldwide who is has earned the Master Certificated Flight Instructor (MCFI) and Master Ground Instructor (MGI) accreditations. These designations are granted by the National Association of Flight Instructors (NAFI) to outstanding aviation educators who are demonstrating an ongoing commitment to excellence, professional growth, and service to the aviation community. He is a longtime member of NAFI as well as AOPA, EAA, IAC, and WAI. In 2005, he was named the National CFI of the Year in recognition of his dedication to and passion for aviation education.
Teipen (John@Teipen.com) represented the Saint Louis FSDO area and the FAA’s Central Region. This year’s other regional winners include MCFI Clifford Floyd Chetwin of Littleton, Colorado (FAA’s Northwest Mountain Region); John Francis Anderson of Gilford, New Hampshire (FAA’s Eastern Region); George Parlin Vose of Alpine, Texas (FAA’s Southwest Region); Janese Thatcher-Buzzell of Inver Grove Heights, Minnesota (FAA’s Great Lakes Region); and Dennis Lee Renzelman of Granada Hills, California (FAA’s Western Pacific Region).
2008 AVIONICS TECHNICIAN OF THE YEAR: Tim Adkison, the 2008 national Avionics Technician of the Year, was born in Northern Ireland, the son of a US Navy master chief petty officer. His first exposure to aviation came as a teenager while on a dependents cruise with his dad,
one of the 5000 crewmembers aboard the aircraft carrier USS John F Kennedy (CVA-67). There, he had the unique opportunity to observe flight deck operations from high atop the ship’s island structure including launches and recoveries of the JFK’s F-14 Tomcats.
When it came time to begin making some career choices, Adkison opted to attend theInstituteofElectronic TechnologyinPaducah,Kentucky. He ultimately graduated second in his class with a degree in electronic engineering technology in 1988. After graduation, he took a position as an avionics technician with Allied Signal Aerospace inLawrence,Kansas, where he ultimately became a lead technician.
After three years inKansas, he decided it was time to leave the flat lands and head back east. Ending up inNashvillein 1991, he took a position with Carpenter Avionics at Nashville International Airport (BNA). He remembers this as an exciting time because he was provided the opportunity to perform flight line maintenance and repair on actual aircraft rather than troubleshooting avionics on a bench.
1993 found Adkison back home at Paducah’s BarkleyRegionalAirport(PAH). He began working with Tomlinson Avionics, a new facility going through the first phase of becoming a repair station. Tomlinson was later acquired by Midwest Aviation Services (www.Midwest-Aviation.com). While there, his responsibilities included research on and installation of new avionics equipment as well as troubleshooting to the component level on DMEs, transponders, radar, VOR/ILS receivers, and communication transceivers. This was also his first experience with engineering and accomplishing installations from beginning to final test flight. He was promoted to Midwest Aviation’s avionics manager in 1999 with duties including installation price quotes, scheduling, employee management, customer relations, and overseeing the transition from an avionics repair station to a maintenance facility repair station.
Throughout his time with Midwest Aviation, he has tutored and mentored numerous students through the curriculum at his alma mater,Paducah’sInstituteofElectronic Technology, now calledPaducahTechnicalCollege. He also provides on-the-job training as well as continuing education seminars for his avionics employees. In addition, he serves on the advisory board for West Kentucky Community andTechnicalCollege.
Adkison (TAdkison@MidwestAviation.net) represented the Louisville FSDO area and the FAA’s Central Region. This year’s other regional avionics technician winners were Andrew James Scanlon of Ellsworth, Maine (FAA’s Eastern Region); Charles Donald Boldin of Oxford, Michigan (FAA’s Great Lakes Region); Mark Conrad Dietz of Searcy, Arkansas (FAA’s Southwest Region); and Dwayne Metteau Comer of Glendale, Arizona (FAA’s Western Pacific Region).
2008 CFI OF THE YEAR: Max Trescott, a Master CFI and Master Ground Instructor, resides inMountain View,California, where he has lived for most of his professional life. A native of northernPennsylvania, he started flying when he was 15 years old. Too young to drive, his mother Sue,
who had herself taken flying lessons as a teenager, drove him to the airport for lessons. He was also inspired by his flight instructor, Dick Johnston, a former Pennsylvania CFI of the Year, for whom the Wellsboro-Johnston airport is now named.
While attendingSwarthmoreCollegeinSwarthmore,Pennsylvania, Trescott completed his private pilot certificate at the age of 19 and met his future wife Laurie. That was followed by an MBA in marketing and management from NYU’s Stern School of Business. After college, he worked for Hewlett-Packard inNew Jersey, later moving to HP’s company headquarters inPalo Alto,California. During his 25 years at HP, he worked in a variety of marketing, sales, and management positions while continuing to fly and earn additional certificates and ratings.
He acquired his CFI rating in September, 2001, and began working as an aviation educator on weekends atSan Jose’sReid-HillviewAirport. Subsequently, he added an ATP certificate as well as CFII and MEI ratings. After leaving HP, he began teaching full-time as an independent flight instructor with several flight schools at the Palo Alto Airport (PAO) but shifted his focus to glass cockpit aircraft. He is now a factory trained Cessna FITS instructor, a Cirrus Design CSIP, aColumbia(Cessna) 350 / 400 instructor, and teaches in the nationalColumbiarecurrent training program.
In 2006, Trescott founded Glass Cockpit Publishing (www.G1000Book.com), launched with the release of his Max Trescott’s G1000 Glass Cockpit Handbook. Several CD-ROM courses and online internet training courses followed, all focused on modern glass cockpit avionics, including the Garmin G1000 and WAAS. As the corporation’s president, he is responsible for new product development. His wife serves as the corporation’s vice president.
As a strong advocate for general aviation and flight safety, he regularly posts articles on his blog, www.MaxTrescott.com Recent articles have urged the FAA to set more aggressive safety goals for general aviation and have explained ramifications of the FAA’s NextGen Automatic Dependent Surveillance Broadcast (ADS-B) proposed rulemaking. He also produces the online newsletter www.PilotSafetyNews.com
A popular speaker at EAA’s AirVenture Oshkosh and atLakeland’s Sun-n-Fun, he also provides safety seminars to local pilot groups as a FAASTeam member with the San Jose FSDO. He is a member of AOPA, NAFI, Mensa, and the Palo Alto Airport Association.
Trescott (Info@SJFlight.com) represented the San Jose FSDO area and the FAA’s Western Pacific Region. This year’s other regional CFI of the Year winners include Master CFI David Paul St George of Ithaca, New York (FAA’s Eastern Region); Master CFI Richard Michael “Rich” Funcheon of Vero Beach, Florida (FAA’s Southern Region); Master CFI Thomas Paul “Tom” Turner of Rose Hill, Kansas (FAA’s Central Region); Master CFI Craig Michael Patterson of Midland, Texas (FAA’s Southwest Region); Master CFI Mark Alan “Mordechai” Levin of Richmond, Illinois (FAA’s Great Lakes Region); and Master CFI Darrel LeRoy Dilley of LaSalle, Colorado (FAA’s Northwest Mountain Region).
2008 AMT OF THE YEAR: Mike Busch of Arroyo Grande,California, is a New Yorker by birth and a mathematician by training. He earned his private pilot certificate as a 20-year old college student, and has since amassed more than four decades of aviation experience as a mechanic,
inspector, pilot, flight instructor, aircraft owner, aviation author, educator, and lecturer.
His interest in turning wrenches grew out of his many years as an aircraft owner and operator intrigued by the mysteries of aviation maintenance. Thus, he started doing his own maintenance under the watchful supervision of a certificated A&P mechanic. Ultimately, he passed the A&P exam and became a certificated mechanic in his own right. Three years later, the FAA granted him an inspection authorization.
An aviation writer since 1970, Busch began his fulltime pursuit of aviation in 1995 after retiring from a long career as a software developer. One of his first post-retirement projects was the founding of AVweb, an Internet aviation news service. He served as editor-in-chief and one of AVweb’s most prolific writers for the first seven years of its existence.
For the past 20 years, the primary focus of his writing and teaching activities has been general aviation maintenance. He has published hundreds of articles in numerous aviation publications. Currently, he writes monthly maintenance articles for American Bonanza Society Magazine, AVweb, Cessna Pilots Association Magazine, and Cirrus Pilot. A long time member of the Cessna Pilots Association’s technical staff, he specializes in twin-engine piston-powered aircraft. In that capacity, Busch has assisted thousands of aircraft owners to troubleshoot and fix the thorny maintenance problems that their own local A&Ps have been struggling to resolve.
The founder and president of Savvy Aviator (www.SavvyAviator.com), Busch provides in-depth technical training to aircraft owners and their mechanics focusing on maintenance and troubleshooting in single and twin-engine aircraft. His goal is to teach them how to troubleshoot aircraft problems and how to manage the maintenance of their aircraft more effectively and cost-efficiently. He conducts these weekend maintenance seminars 10 to 20 times each year at venues throughout theUnited States.
In addition to his airframe and powerplant ratings, he is also a certificated flight instructor, as well as a glider and seaplane pilot, and has earned phase 11 in the FAA’s WINGS program. A member of AOPA, EAA, American Bonanza Society, Cessna Pilots Association, Cirrus Owners & Pilots Association, and the Professional Aviation Maintenance Association (PAMA), he is a frequent speaker at AirVenture-Oshkosh, AOPA Expo, and many other aviation gatherings.
Busch (Mike.Busch@SavvyAviator.com) represented the San Jose FSDO area as well as the FAA’s Western Pacific Region. This year’s other regional AMT winners include Eric Bruce Christenson of Bellevue, Washington (FAA’s Northwest Mountain Region); Brian Alexander Crafford of West Paducah, Kentucky (FAA’s Central Region); Leroy Alan Muise of Trenton, Maine (FAA’s Eastern Region); and David Lee Mills of Portage, Michigan (FAA’s Great Lakes Region).
The General Aviation Awards program executive committee includes the Aircraft Electronics Ass’n (AEA), the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the National Ass’n of Flight Instructors (NAFI). Additional support and sponsorship are provided by Women in Aviation International (WAI), the Professional Aviation Maintenance Ass’n (PAMA), the National Business Aviation Ass’n (NBAA), the National Ass’n of State Aviation Officials (NASAO), the National Air Transportation Ass’n (NATA), the Helicopter Ass’n International (HAI), the General Aviation Manufacturers Ass’n (GAMA), the Experimental Aircraft Ass’n (EAA), the Aircraft Maintenance Technology Society (AMT Society), the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Ass’n (AOPA) and the Aeronautical Repair Station Ass’n (ARSA).